Dalian Wanda announces its second $15 billion theme-park and shopping-plaza project in a week for China.>
Dalian Wanda, the Chinese real estate and entertainment conglomerate headed by Wang Jianlin, China’s richest man, has announced its second $15 billion theme-park and shopping-plaza project in a week for China.
Beijing- based Wanda announced on Thursday that it will spend $7.3 billion on a theme park in historic Xi’an province and another $7 billion on 15 shopping malls throughout the province. Xi’an is home to the site of China’s 2,000-yearold Terra Cotta warriors.
That announcement came less than a week after Wanda unveiled plans to spend more than $7 billion on a Wanda City theme park Hunan province, plus another $7 billion on 15 shopping plazas throughout the province.
Wang has pledged billions to build 15 Wanda City projects across China by the end of the decade.
The new theme parks are the latest move in his announced plan to take on the Walt Disney Co for dominance in China’s entertainment industry.
In May, Wang criticized Disney’s opening of a new theme park in Shanghai, saying,
“One tiger is no match for a pack of wolves — Shanghai has one Disney, while Wanda, across the nation, will open 15 to 20.”
The $5.5 billion Shanghai Disneyland, which opened in June, drew 4 million visitors in its first four months, according to the company, which said it expects it to be close to breaking even in its first full year of operations.
Recently, Wang he has taken a softer approach to Disney, visiting the company’s new Shanghai Disneyland resort.